In the spirit of Halloween, let’s explore some of the most “scary” details and facts about your 2011 Oakland Athletics, shall we? You’ll notice that I’ve taken the liberty to italicize all Halloween-themed words throughout this post. Enjoy.
Did you know that the A’s ranked 28th in runs with just 315 prior to the All-Star break? Oh, now that’s scary. After spending a few million on Hideki Matsui, all the A’s got in return was one-half of a productive season. Does the team get any sort of discount for Matsui’s bloodcurdling first-half numbers?
The grim news that Oakland’s 1B Daric Barton suffered a torn labrum in his right shoulder this year only enhances Oakland’s glaring problem at first-base. Oakland’s Daric Barton, before getting sent down to Oakland’s minor league system, the 26-year old hit a ghastly .212/.325/.267 with no home runs and 21 RBIs in 67 games with the A’s.
Oakland’s offense, in general, did not perform particularly well this year. It’s frightening to think that with all the additions that GM Billy Beane made during the offseason had no positive impact in the win column this year. The A’s actually lost more games with the additions of Matsui, Josh Willingham, and David DeJesus than they did without them.
At least in 2010 the A’s had ended the season with some hope for the future. This year’s finish definitely didn’t satisfy anyone’s cravings for a championship.
Defensively, the news was just as horrific. The A’s committed a total of 124 errors, the second most in all of baseball. No amount of hocus-pocus could’ve fixed the lifeless defenders this year. The A’s, usually a defensively sound team, looked downright dead on defense this year.
Cliff Pennington, quite the surprising leader on offense this year, turned out to be the leader in errors as well. He coughed up 22 errors this year at short stop. It drove me mad watching all of those botched plays this year.
In addition to these small, but gruesome tidbits, here a few other notable “scary” facts about the 2011 A’s:
- A’s pitchers posted a 4.48 ERA during the second-half of the season. Their second-half “mini-collapse” pushed their season mark to 3.71.
- Hideki Matsui posted a .540 OPS during the month of May. He followed that scary performance with an equally unimpressive June. He wasn’t a huge investment, but seriously, can’t the A’s get a discount from the guy formally known as Godzilla?
- Willingham was the biggest ghoul of them all this year, posting 29 home runs and 98 RBIs this year. Among all the other hitters in Oakland’s lineup, Willingham was the beast who actually delivered. This guy is downright horrifyingly good.
- Reliever Brian Fuentes called out ex-manager Bob Geren for his horrific managerial skills. Geren must be scary good if he’s working for the Mets now.
- Billy Beane was a mad scientist this past winter, making several runs at landing 3B Adrian Beltre. Ultimately, however, Beane’s craziness was beat out by Nolan Ryan’s own craziness. Beltre signed with the Rangers for mega $$$.